HOUSTON » James Harden scored 28 points, Terrence Jones had 10 of his 15 in the fourth quarter, and the Houston Rockets beat the Dallas Mavericks 103-94 on Tuesday night for their first playoff series victory since 2009.
Houston won the Western Conference series 4-1 to advance to face the winner of the Clippers-Spurs series in the second round.
The Rockets bounced back from a lackluster performance in a 121-109 loss in Game 4 to head to the West semifinals for the first time since Yao Ming starred for Houston.
Dwight Howard had 18 points and 19 rebounds to help the Rockets dominate inside and Josh Smith scored 20 points. The Mavericks couldn’t get going from long-range, going just 5 of 26 on 3-pointers.